John Beckett ~ The Pyramids of Uxmal

I can’t reblog this article, so I’ll just post a link.

I always enjoy John Beckett’s contemplative musings, and this piece combines personal experience, ancient Mayan ruins, modern Mayan civilization, a ghost story of sorts, and important questions to ask ourselves as individuals and as a society. John’s a self described “Pagan, Druid and Unitarian Universalist,” but for some reason this piece particularly reminds me of the prayer of confession in the Episcopal Church, which seeks forgiveness “for things done and for things left undone.” As the days shorten into winter nights and the world around us continues to offer chaos, I find myself going deeper inside, too. This is an uncomfortable read, but one that asks us to consider what is ours to do.

In a world of imperfect options, at what point do we fight for our lives or for sacred things threatened with destruction? “[W]hat necessary acts are we neglecting because we find them unpleasant? What helpful changes have we not made because they carry risks, risks that are far less than those faced by the players on the Uxmal ball court?” Worth an introspective read.

13 responses to this post.

  1. Reblogged this on Tania Marie's Blog and commented:
    I’ve visited Chichen Itza three times now, walking the ball court where the Mayans played these sacrificial games, John Beckett shares about, of so-called “honor”.

    I wondered what ran through the players’ minds and that of the crowds watching as well. As connected as I am to the Mayans, I have always felt such a dissonance with the sacrificial parts of what evolved in these ancient times, wanting to remember and remind others of the natural harmony that was present as well, and that these are reminders of things we don’t HAVE to be engaged in.

    There IS always a choice.

    In my own life there have been times I felt like I was watching myself on the sidelines, as I “played” out things that felt necessary to something bigger needing to take place. And yet I can look back now and although it is all perfect in its own way and I wouldn’t change it since I am who I am because of it, I also realize I DID/DO always have a choice that may carry risks, but are nothing compared to the risks of simply accepting what I think I HAVE to do.

    Some things have felt written in my soul plan, but I believe we can even rewrite and recreate that because we are powerful, ever-creative, and sovereign beings.

    Thank you Laura for sharing this thoughtful post by John Beckett to explore the “uncomfortable”.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Posted by Mitch Mattraw on November 25, 2014 at 6:15 pm

    brilliant connective writing, thank you for sharing this Laura.


  3. Posted by Cindy W. on November 25, 2014 at 7:34 pm

    yes, thank you. I haven’t been to Uxmal or Chichen Itza, but have been to Teotihuacan and also was unable to climb the Pyramid of the Sun. Also had a wariness about the Aztec, who were the ones who did the sacrifice to the Hummingbird God (interestingly, a Zapatista-dressed person was there when we were). Our tour guide apologized for her people’s barbarity, but it was striking – later we went past the scene where the Mexican gov’t killed many students at Tlatelolco in 1968. The young woman guide quietly conveyed how wrong she felt that was. Couldn’t say anything – we US citizens have had things done in our name in which I didn’t believe … thought-provoking.


  4. Thanks, Tania! Yes, I figured you would have info and experiences to add. Indeed, we do have choices and learning to recognize and take responsibility for these choice points are keys to moving into a new paradigm. We create that each time we invite courage and compassion to inform our choices. xo

    Liked by 1 person

  5. You’re welcome, Mitch! Yes, I just really enjoy all the places John’s writing goes, and he always manages to bring it all together into a cohesive whole that challenges you think, feel and sometimes act in more conscious ways.


  6. Thanks, Cindy. It is always so odd to me to think of human sacrifices to a Hummingbird God, given that hummingbirds drink nectar. There are many things we just don’t know about the Ancients. In past life sessions, both people who were offered as sacrifices and those who performed the sacrifices have come through. In many ways, modern society looks at the sacrifices as “barbaric” and yet with our wars and slaughters of innocents in our name, we are certainly no better — and perhaps a whole lot worse.

    For the past year especially, I have been feeling more pressure to assess what is mine to do in terms of stopping such slaughter. Can one person make that difference, and if so, how? I have long said, “Not in my name” and I charge any taxes I do pay to go only towards supporting organic farmers. This pieces does beg questions, though, in terms of what sacrifices — spiritual or just senseless — we allow to undergird our reality. Thought-provoking and heart-wrenching … but somewhere, somehow, I pray we find a new balance.


  7. you said it! xoox!


  8. yes, i have found it very odd as well about the hummingbird god. for the aztecs it is Huitzilopochtli – a warrior god of war and the sun, represented by a hummingbird. i have never had a resonance and connection to the aztecs at all, but much so to the mayans. but the only connection i can ascertain with the hummingbird is because they are extremely territorial and aggressive in terms of protecting their territory, despite their size and lack of being able to do any real harm. they are not shy and will fend for what’s theirs, but they really are no threat. so it is quite interesting to say the least.


  9. Posted by Linda on November 26, 2014 at 2:22 am

    Laura – Thank you for, as usual, the very thought provoking, nuanced comments you provide to the articles you post. Much appreciated.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Yes, I thought of the territorial aspect, too. That’s the only part that really would make sense. I just had an email from someone saying that when the Aztecs conquered the Mayans, they interpreted their writings literally — as in gave their heart and heads, meaning literally offer the physical heart and head. Makes sense.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Thanks and you’re welcome, Linda!


  12. i agree…but still odd to identify the hummingbird with it, so there must be other layers. yes, i always felt that the aztecs took the sacrifice, blood shed, and more violent behaviors to the next level – likely why i don’t have the resonance as with the mayans, but also i am turned off by their art which too, which is also more hard edged and masculine, i feel.


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